Position Statement – AKC Recognition
The MidSouth Boykin Spaniel Retriever Club (MSBSRC) Board of Directors (BOD) wishes for each of its members to know we support the Boykin Spaniel Society (BSS) and only the BSS as the “official registry of the Boykin Spaniel breed”. Since its formation in 1977, the Society’s stated objective has been to, “… Maintain a record of all purebred Boykin Spaniels registered and to do all possible to perpetuate their natural hunting ability.”
In recent years a small group of individuals formed The Boykin Spaniel Club and Breeders Association of America (BSCBAA) with a stated purpose of getting the Boykin Spaniel recognized as a breed by The American Kennel Club (AKC) and having their organization recognized as the official parent club of the Boykin Spaniel breed. This should certainly encourage many to question the motive and purpose of the AKC and the BSCBAA.
The Boykin Spaniel Society, since its inception in 1977, has seen no benefit to any affiliation with the AKC, nor has its membership of over 2700 ever requested such affiliation or recognition of the breed by the AKC. The BSS has continued to promote and perpetuate the Boykin Spaniel as a hunting partner and loyal companion and as a truly unique and endearing breed of canine that has continued to improve with age. The BSS continues to serve its membership by offering free health clinics and OFA evaluation reimbursements through its wholly owned subsidiary, the Boykin Spaniel Foundation as it strives to improve the overall health of the breed. The Boykin Spaniel Society and the Boykin Spaniel Registry were here first and to those who truly care about the welfare of the breed, will always be the “Official Registry of the Boykin Spaniel” now and forever! It is somewhat ironic that the AKC lists the Boykin Spaniel Registry as a recognized registry when it comes to meeting a requirement of the AKC Foundation Stock Service.
Most of us who care deeply for this unique little hunting dog want nothing to do with the AKC and its emphasis on showing dogs on the bench. Many would agree that this has had a tremendously detrimental effect on many sporting breeds hence the descriptor, “bench-bred” and “field-bred” that is so often applied to hunting dogs. We do not want this to happen to the Boykin Spaniel. Although in the recent past the BSCBAA hosted weight pulling events, we are pleased that they no longer sanction the "sport" that we consider cruel and a significant corruption of the purpose for which the Boykin was bred. It was bred as a hunting dog—period.
What can you do to help? It’s simple; continue to support the BSS as the official registry. If the other group does not have dogs to register they might lose support for their efforts. Let’s all continue our support of the BSS and its objectives as we move forward with this special breed of dog.